Thika to host Under-16 Copa Africa tourney in December
- The second edition of the U16 Copa Coca-Cola Cup of Nations tournament will be held at the Mpesa Academy Foundation in Thika from December 2 to 5 with twelve nations set to feature at the annual youth fiesta.
- President Uhuru Kenyatta will open the three-day event with organisers welcoming the youth fiesta as a marvelous platform to churn out new talent. Unlike last year the second edition will feature boy’s category only.
The second edition of the U16 Copa Coca-Cola Cup of Nations tournament will be held at the Mpesa Academy Foundation in Thika from December 2 to 5 with twelve nations set to feature at the annual youth fiesta.
President Uhuru Kenyatta will open the three-day event with organisers welcoming the youth fiesta as a marvelous platform to churn out new talent. Unlike last year the second edition will feature boy’s category only.
Kenya, who emerged winners in the inaugural edition held in Nakuru last year, are in Pool ‘A’ and will launch their title haunt against Zimbabwe before facing Mozambique in the final preliminary match.
The Kenya Secondary Schools Sports Association (KSSSA) Under-16 champions Serani Boys will carry a sense of duty for the hosts at the championship featuring countries from diverse Confederation of African Football (CAF) zones, including Cecafa, Wafu, Cosafa and Cosafa.
Speaking on Tuesday during the release of the draws, Coca-Cola (sponsors of the competition) Head of Marketing Reinaldo Padua said the tourney will play a key role in laying the foundation for future football stars.
“The first edition was successful and this is why we have given Kenya the hosting rights again. This is a good platform to churn out talent for our youth and we have seen the fruits as some of the stars who participated in Nakuru last year performed very well during this year’s Under-19 games in Arusha,” he said.
KSSSA assistant Secretary General Quinto Omusugu echoed Padua’s sentiments, noting such age group tournaments has beautiful history of birthing global stars, right from secondary school level.
“We are happy to be associated with this tournament which is very important in shaping the footballers of tomorrow. Most of the senior successful players in this country have played in this tournament; we have the likes of McDonald Mariga, Michael Olunga and Victor Wanyama, who have passed through the tournament,” he averred.
Last year, Kenya claimed a eclean sweep after St. Anthony’s Boys Kitale and Moi Girls Nangili overcame Nigeria and Zimbabwe respectively in the finals to clinch the inaugural title.
Other countries to feature in this year’s edition are; Tanzania, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Zambia, Ethiopia, Namibia, Uganda, Burkina Faso, Angola and Botswana.
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